retaining tech talent

How do you go about retaining tech talent when the turnover rate is aggressively high? That’s the question companies nationwide are asking. We’re at the point where some highly skilled IT professionals are being approached multiple times a week by tech recruiters, and many of those offers are too tantalizing to dismiss without consideration. Companies that manage to retain their top performers provide the proper incentive for them to stay. In our experience, these five benefits are better at retaining tech talent because of their ability to engage employees and give them reasons to remain on your team.

1.) Learning and Development

Tech professionals are part of an industry that embraces and thrives on change, so it’s no surprise that your employees want to be prepared with the tools and experience to handle it. At least 16% of Developers in the 2018 Stack Overflow Survey said opportunities for professional development are their highest priority. Surveys of cybersecurity professionals find that 88% of them prioritized companies that invested in IT certifications and training when looking for new jobs. Ask tech workers of every stripe, and they’ll respond similarly about how training is one of the top priorities.

Companies can retain their technical professionals by sponsoring learning opportunities, providing their projects that challenge their technical skills, or even offering chances to grow leadership skills.

2.) Better Healthcare Options

Is your employees’ health a priority? If so, you might have an easier time retaining tech talent. As many as 88% of candidates would take another job for better healthcare benefits. According to SHRM, 95% of companies say their employees consider healthcare coverage their most important benefit. Because Americans are believed to spend upward of $10,000 per year on healthcare costs, any help your business can provide will be greatly appreciated.

However, basic healthcare coverage is standard enough, and companies that remain competitive are those that update their healthcare options as part of their retention strategies. In fact, as many as three-fifths of the organizations SHRM surveyed said they had altered healthcare benefits over the last 12 months to improve tech talent retention. Reevaluating employee healthcare coverage on a regular basis to match the market will keep employees around longer.

3.) Flexible Schedules

Tech professionals want the ability to work when they are at their best. Not every person is at their most focused and productive at the same time, so most employees would enjoy the ability to set their own schedule. And the data reflects that. According to an HBR article, 88% of employees take a flexible schedule into heavy consideration when looking at job offers.

However, offering flexible schedule options does not mean that the whole workday needs to be up for grabs. Many companies will provide a guideline, designating certain hours as mandatory and giving wiggle room on either end of the day. These core hours end up being the time to schedule calls and meetings, allowing employees to handle the rest of their workload as they see fit.

4.) Remote Work Options

More than just a flexible schedule, tech professionals prioritize the flexibility of where they work. Teleconferencing and collaboration tools have made the need to always work from the office optional. Increasingly, tech professionals are latching on to that idea. As many as 80% of professionals would highly consider a job offer if it provided them the ability to work from home. Companies that are hesitant to only see employees in the office part of the time might settle for never seeing them again.

The key to implementing remote work options is to remember that this benefit isn’t an all-or-nothing scenario. Giving your IT team the ability to work outside of the office once or twice a week can help to take some of the pressure off of getting ready in the morning (who doesn’t want to cut down their commute) and improve their overall happiness.

5.) A Supportive Culture

Though a little more intangible, a supportive company culture can be the glue that keeps your team together for longer. This is not just about creating a fun atmosphere. Tech giants that provide a regular happy hour and arcade games around the office but don’t do anything to address grueling hours and disengaged management will still have a harder time keeping their tech team.

A supportive company culture is one where employees feel their work-life balance is respected, the leadership team is transparent about their decisions, employee ideas are embraced, and management has a stake in the success of employees. That’s only part of it. Every company needs to strike up their own balance, but this is definitely central to retaining technical employees in a tight market.

Want to improve your strategies for retaining tech talent? Take a look at our 11 Hiring Tactics That Get Tech Companies the Best Talent eBook. Many of these strategies can be refurbished to keep your best employees on your team.

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